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Tag: hope

Out of Our Hands

“So we stand in our parched and barren present, looking forward with confidence to God’s redemption. . . Sure, because of the Spirit’s presence …Our destiny is no longer in our own hands but in God’s hands, who is all powerful, loving, and whose purpose is redemption … The presence of the Spirit shows what final confirmation will be … The fact that the future is in God’s hands where we neither placed it nor from which we can take it away, Paul understands to be the basis of confidence and joy, rather than of fear and pain… because we are in God’s hands, the kind of God who sent his own Son for us (Romans 5:6-10) all things will finally…

Into this Very Darkness

Pondering the current national security debate — any moral sensibility beyond utilitarian self-interest is hard to spot. If the prophets have taught us anything, it is that armies, weapons, and foreign alliances cannot compensate for expelling God. We still have “in God we trust” on our money only because the courts have accepted the defense that it is a “theological affirmation devoid of content.” Indeed. We are not self-securing beings. God controls the pre-conditions that make possible profitable labor. Apart from his blessing, we labor under a futility curse. Heedlessness cannot defeat lawlessness — it turns us into something not worth defending and stores up judgment for ourselves and our posterity. The chaos that results from disregarding the first commandment…

A Kept People

Satan’s power is so great! Parroting bad news sings Satan’s praises and sovereignty. And, when we fight fire with fire by deploying distortions to score our opponents, we employ the Father of lies to fight lies. Of what value is a holiness that defends itself with lies? “The world was so much the world today, and is expected to be even more so tomorrow!” There you have the daily news. So now tell me something new. The world-that-lieth-in-wickedness is one word. God’s sovereignty remains uncompromised. He “keeps his covenant to a thousand generations.” (Psalm 105:8) I count about 167 of those since Abraham, so that easily covers us. Much later than Abraham, in a much darker time than ours, Jude addressed…

Hull it Out

In light of the Supreme Court’s decision establishing gay “marriage”– I remain mindful of Wolfhart Pannenberg’s response to my question 23 years ago, “What’s a Christian minister to do in a situation where almost no one agrees that Jesus is the Truth?” With fist raised, “Resist! Resist! Resist! Resist! Resist!” was his answer. I get tired, but that is still the right answer. The Church has always gone forward in the midst of storms and temptations. Why should our day be any different? “Hull it out.” “It is well with us, if we can ride out a storm at anchor; that is, lie still and expect, and surrender ourselves to God, and anchor in that confidence, till the storm blow over.…

Rich Poverty

Jesus respected day laborers enough to use their example to rebuke the Pharisees for their spiteful attitude toward the Gentiles. (Matthew 20:1-16) “We have borne the burden of the day…” those hired first complained of those hired last, but paid the same. To make things worse, Jesus said those “last shall be first”. Hopeful day laborers have become a common sight on S. Cooper St., in my old hometown of Arlington, Texas. Whatever rouses these men every day to withstand the sun, no place to sit but hot dirt, and all for the chance that some stranger might drive by and offer work? What are the chances? That mixture of fidelity, courage, and hope born of desperation, Jesus admires. They are…